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Cold & Blac coffee liqueur (21% ABV)
Star rating: 5/5
In a nutshell: This finely balanced botanical brew pairs fresh coffee with caramel and chocolate for a refreshingly sweet tipple. Enjoy with tonic to fully experience all this complex concoction has to offer.
Founded by photographer and mixologist Tem Mellese in 2012, Cold & Blac began as a dream to fuse London’s obsession with coffee with the city’s booming cocktail scene.
It was soon decided that cold extract coffee should be at the core of the recipe, and now, Cold & Blac uses the Ethiopian coffee tradition as its inspiration.
Ethiopia uses ancient processes to help preserve the earthiness of the coffee while retaining the zesty, fruity flavours for which the region’s coffee is so well known. Cold & Blac translates these traditional methods into modern production by using natural processes and ingredients to make its spirits. Cold liquids are distilled through coffee grounds, a slow and painstaking process that guards against bitterness and maximises the fruity, citrussy flavours of the bean.
This provides a smoother finish (perfect for cocktails), and produces less waste than other methods.
Cold & Blac uses only fairtrade, organic and GMO-free ingredients, and refuses to add processed cane sugar, artificial sweeteners, additives or thickening agents to its spirits.
The care and attention that goes into producing this coffee liqueur is evident from the first sip. The drink is nuanced, as a fine coffee would be, with caramel notes meeting milky chocolate, cherries and berries, under an overarching coffee character.
The perfect pour
Although this liqueur can be enjoyed over ice, it’s delicious mixed with plain tonic and garnished with a lemon wedge.
Tonic stretches the drink out and opens up the liqueur, allowing the layers of flavour to fully emerge. A lemon wedge helps to usher in the citrus notes without souring the overall taste.
Coffee recipes and tips
This review was last updated in December 2019. If you have any questions or suggestions for future reviews, or spot anything that has changed in price or availability, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org. For information on alcohol guidelines, read our guide to drinking responsibly.